In Partnership with

St Agatha’s Parish

North William Street, Dublin D01N7F6

St Laurence O’Toole Parish

Seville Place, North Wall, Dublin D01KN73

11th February 2024. The Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time. THE DISEASE OF SIN SICKENS AND CRIPPLES THE SOUL

God makes it very clear today that the kingdom of sin cannot co-exist with the Kingdom of Heaven. He says that the unclean man must live outside the camp, which means that the sinner cannot live inside the camp of heaven (Lev 13:1, 44-46). The unclean stench of sin will not be tolerated by God in heaven or here on earth. When we hold onto sin by not going to confession to be spiritually forgiven and healed by Jesus, our bodies suffer from a spiritually terminal disease, which will rot and kill the soul, if not treated. It is important that we understand that committing sin separates us from God and sets us as outcasts from the community of the Church, here on earth and the eternal Church in heaven. We are unclean in God’s eyes. Everything in heaven is done for the glory of God and our lives here on earth should also be lived for the glory of God. Even before eating a meal, we should acknowledge providence and give thanks to God with a simple prayer. We should not offend others but always imitate a compassionate Christ in everything (1 Cor 10:31-11:1). In today’s Gospel (Mk 1:40-45), the leper had the desire to be cured and healed by Jesus, as he humbly knelt down before Him. In the approaching season of Lent, Jesus wants us to do the same thing with Him in confession. To humbly kneel before Him and ask (plead) to be made clean from the disease of our sins, otherwise our souls will continue to suffer sickness and spiritually rot.
Jesus told the healed man to go show himself to the Priest, to make the offering for his healing as prescribed by Moses as evidence of your recovery. He is directed him back to the Church community. After we are spiritually healed from our sins in confession, the Priest will prescribe a penance according to the law of Christ as evidence of our own recovery. We are then reconciled with God and reintegrated into the community. Jesus strongly warned him not to publicise this miracle, because He wished to remain in the area and heal many more people. Sadly, the healed man disobeyed this Command of Jesus and sinned again. The healed man imitated Adam and Eve by ignoring God’s instructions. The devil is behind every sin and he didn’t want Jesus to move freely in the city and release people from his captivity, so he tempted the man to disobey Jesus and tell everybody, which he did. However, the devil is no match for Jesus and the people hearing that Jesus was outside the city in a deserted place, flocked to Him for healing. Notice how the healed leper’s sin of disobedience, not only affected his soul, but also had an impact on the Church Community, because now they had to leave their city to reach Jesus. This Lent let us give-up sinning and extend the almsgiving of forgiveness and love especially to those who trespass against us. God bless, Fr. Brendan.